Millennium Post

Students are suffering due to frequent agitations: Partha

Kolkata: State Education minister Partha Chatterjee on Sunday urged the para-teachers to lift their agitation. 30 of them have launched an indefinite fast near Bikash Bhavan, demanding hike in their salaries.

"Hope their good sense will prevail and they will lift their agitation. They know that this government is compassionate. It is not right on their part to take to the roads as the students are being inconvenienced because of their frequent agitation," Chatterjee said on the sidelines of Science Fair 2019 at Netaji Indoor Stadium.

Chatterjee inaugurated the three-day fair, which is a competitive exhibition of science models, in presence of state Sports and Youth Affairs minister Aroop Biswas.

The para-teachers had started their agitation at Central Park from Monday and since Friday, 30 of them are on an indefinite fast. The location is very close to Bikash Bhavan, where the state Education department is situated.

It may be mentioned that it was only last year when the Education department had given a pay hike for 22,085 para-teachers at primary level from Rs 5,954 to Rs 10,000. Similarly for 26,585 para-teachers at the higher secondary level, the hike in pay was from Rs 8,500 to Rs 13,000.

However, the para-teachers alleged that the salary is meagre considering the present market condition and in comparison to the salary in other professions.

It should be noted that this year the competition for the Science Fair was organised right from the block level.

"We are encouraging our students in their scientific pursuits, for which we have organised competitions in block, municipality, corporation as well as the borough level. 5,744 schools of the Madhyamik level took part this year while the number of higher secondary level schools that participated was 2,991. 198 colleges and eight universities have taken part as well. If we involve the whole network then 80,122 students across the state have taken part in the competition. This is an all-time record," Biswas said.

The main objective of the Science Fair is to put an end to superstitions that are still rampant, particularly in the rural areas. "The young minds should use scientific reasoning to make people's minds free from such superstitions," he added.

A senior official of the state Youth Affairs department said that the department encourages ideas and innovations in science that can bring a change in the daily life of common people.

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